Story: Māori

Carving of Tānenui-a-rangi

Carving of Tānenui-a-rangi

This carving at the Victoria University of Wellington marae, Te Herenga Waka, depicts Tānenui-a-rangi, an important figure in Māori mythology. Among other things, Tāne was responsible for separating earth and sky and for fashioning the first human. In some traditions Tāne ascended to the highest heavens to obtain the ‘baskets of the wānanga’ (knowledge, understanding, wisdom) and bring them to humankind.

Using this item

Te Tumu Herenga Waka Marae, Victoria University of Wellington

All rights to images of this marae are held by Te Tumu Herenga Waka Marae, Victoria University of Wellington

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How to cite this page:

Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, 'Māori - Pre-European society', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/object/2525/carving-of-tanenui-a-rangi (accessed 16 December 2019)

Story by Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal